Highland Europe Raises $850 Million Fund For Tech Scale-Ups

A London-based venture capital firm behind startups GetYourGuide and Wolt said it’s raised 700 million euros ($850 million) to invest in growth-stage European software and internet businesses.

Highland Europe said Monday it saw “significant commitment from investors,” resulting in an oversubscribed fund, in part because of how technology showed it could support businesses during the pandemic and may bolster an economic recovery. It didn’t name the backers of its new investment vehicle.

“During 2020 we have seen 10-year trends in tech adoption compressed into one year across both consumer and business segments,” said Fergal Mullen, co-founder and partner at Highland Europe, in a statement. “The opportunity at the growth stage in Europe has never been more evident or more urgent.”

Highland also said it’s promoted Jean Tardy-Joubert, Gajan Rajanathan and Ronan Shally to partners and deployed nearly 200 million euros during the pandemic in new startups and its portfolio companies.

European tech companies easily attract funding at early stages but struggle later in their growth, the firm said, which prevents the bloc’s tech sector from challenging the dominance of American and Asian giants.

Those regions are also investing, however. In October, New York and Los Angeles-based VC firm Greycroft said it raised $680 million to find the next Bumble or Venmo, topping its previous $250 million fund raised in 2017 and 2018, and Japan’s SoftBank Group Corp.’s remains a major investor in global tech companies via its Vision Funds.

©2020 Bloomberg L.P.

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